Passion. Community. Pride. These are some of the words that Canadians use when talking about the small businesses in their neighbourhoods, which is why American Express Canada is thrilled to announce the launch of a new program, Shop Small.
Shop Small is starting in Toronto with a program to bring both consumers and small businesses together throughout the month of April. This initiative aims to celebrate and support many of the often unsung drivers of the economy – the thousands of small business owners who make the city unique.
Since November 2012, a widespread campaign to rally small businesses and community leaders to support the program has been underway in Toronto. To date, more than 4,000 merchants in Toronto have joined the Shop Small Network and leaders in government such as the Mayor of the City of Toronto are joining the movement to shop small.
“Small businesses play an incredible role in making Toronto the dynamic city that we are proud to call home,” said Mayor Rob Ford. “I encourage all Toronto residents to join me in celebrating small businesses and be a part of the Shop Small movement launched today in Toronto.”
To better understand how Canadians feel about small businesses, American Express Canada conducted a national survey, the American Express Shop Small Monitor. Survey results found that 81 per cent of Canadians feel they owe it to their community to support the independent small businesses on their local main street. Additionally, Canadians cite supporting local entrepreneurs (73%) and keeping funds in the local community (70%) as top reasons they shop small.
To celebrate the launch of Shop Small, American Express is launching a campaign on Facebook to profile this network of merchants. Torontonians are asked to show their love for their favourite Shop Small business in Toronto by voting for them on an interactive map on the American Express Canada Facebook page. The business that receives the most votes will be named Toronto’s Neighbourhood Gem, will be featured in an American Express Toronto Life Advertorial, and also receive a consultation with Facebook Canada to better understand how to utilize social channels to drive their business.
Additional findings from the American Express Shop Small Monitor include:
- 90% of Canadian consumers agree small businesses make a significant economic contribution to their community
- 94% believe it is important to support small retailers, restaurants or businesses
- 92% agree small businesses contribute to their neighborhoods’ culture
- 80% like to establish relationships with local shop owners in their neighborhoods
About the American Express Shop Small Monitor
The study was commissioned by American Express Canada and conducted by Rogers Connect Market Research group. The survey was conducted between January 23 and 29, 2013 and involved an online survey among a representative sample of 2,010 Canadian shoppers.